After being crushed 8-4 by the Detroit Tigers on April 6, the New York Yankees were a miserable 1-4–not a great way to start the season. New York reliever Joba Chamberlain, Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, was roughed up in the 8th inning of the game, letting Detroit take a four-run lead into the ninth. His ERA was a gruesome 21.60 following the appearance. Clearly the Yankees had to make a move.
The following morning, Joba shaved off the face furniture.
"It wasn't doing us any good," he said. "And I wanted to see if I still had an upper lip."
For reasons mysterious and baffling, not only did Joba decide to grow the facial fluff during spring training, but it made the trip north with the big league club for the start of the season. So on opening day, Mariano's final, in the Bronx, against the hated Boston Red Sox, it was that "beautiful, terrible mustache" that really stood out.
But now it's gone.
Since the move, the Yankees have won three straight. And after pitching a scoreless 9th in a win over Cleveland on Monday, Joba has lowered his ERA to 13.50. Still awful, but to be fair, he has pitched only 2.2 innings so far.
Although losing the fuzzy lip hat led to this three-game Yankee surge, it's unlikely anyone is hoping he shaves off anything else to keep the streak alive.
Before: Not winning